The Carleton College softball split its season-opening doubleheader with Crown College. The Knights struggled to get the bats going in a 3-1 game one loss, but they bounced back and claimed the nightcap by an 8-0 (5 inn.) tally.
GAME 1 RECAP
As the lone returning starting pitcher on the Carleton (1-1 overall) staff, Logan Robinson (So./Alexandria, Va./National Cathedral School) got the ball in the opener and kept her team in the game. She worked a career-best 7.0 innings and allowed only two earned runs.
Unfortunately, Storm (1-1 overall) starting pitcher Oliva Christopherson was even better, holding the Knights to a single run as she worked around six walks thanks to seven strikeouts.
“I give credit to their pitcher in game one. She kept us off balance, and we didn’t make the necessary adjustments,” said Carleton head coach Amy Erickson. “Logan also threw a really nice game and gave us lots of opportunities to win that one. We just didn’t quite execute when we needed.”
Crown scratched out a run in the top of the third, only to see Carleton knot the scored in the bottom of the frame when Brooke McKelvey (So./West Linn, Ore./West Linn) walked, stole second, advanced on a wild pitch, and raced home via a Cassie Cunniff (Fy./Mt. Prospect, Ill./Prospect) sac bunt.
The Storm regained the lead in the fourth with a two-out run and tacked on an insurance tally in the fifth, despite not getting the ball out of the infield.
The Knights left nine runners on base, five of them in scoring position.
GAME 2 RECAP
Faith Hanshaw (Fy./The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands Christian Acad.) surrendered only two hits and walk over 5.0 innings in notching her first collegiate victory. She also went 2-for-3 with three RBI to help her own cause.
Carleton scored four times in the second inning to open the scoring. A wild pitch brought home the first run. Hanshaw followed with a two-run double to center, then she raced home on McKelvey’s single up the middle.
The Knights capped the evening with another four-run rally in the bottom of the fifth. Natalie Maurice (Sr./Eden Prairie, Minn./Eden Prairie) smashed a RBI double to right center, and Madison Collins (So./Elmhurst, Ill./York) followed with her third hit of the game, this one a RBI single to left field. Base hits by rookies Laurie Avila (Fy./Sugar Grive, Ill./Oswego) and Hala Soliman (Fy./Harrisburg, N.C./Lake Norman Charter) led to another run, and Hanshaw delivered an opposite field RBI single to give Carleton the walk-off victory.
“I’m glad we came out ready to change things in game two,” said Erickson. “Getting some hard hits early and pushing a few runs across really helped get our jitters out. Faith certainly didn’t look like a freshman throwing her first collegiate game. She was really solid, and we made some nice plays behind her that game.”